Antennas for Athletes: Small antennas in difficult environments

ImageSmall antennas in difficult environments

Speaker: Professor David V. Thiel, Director, Centre for Wireless Monitoring and Applications, Griffith University, Brisbane


Abstract: The Centre for Wireless Monitoring and Applications at Griffith University is involved in three main applications areas – two areas require small wireless sensor nodes to function in very difficult environments. These are: sensors on athletes (arms, legs, torso, costume etc.) and their implements (bats/stick/racquet/oars/bikes etc), and sensors down drill holes and buried in the earth. In most cases these sensors need to be robust, waterproof and small so normal operations are not impeded.

In these types of environment, there is a significant frequency shift of the antenna resonance and one method of overcoming this is to design antennas with large bandwidths. However, there are fundamental size limitations for antennas which are directly related to bandwidth. 

This paper will outline some of the environmental problems and their solutions, the fundamental size limits as applied to these sensor nodes, and some of the problems we are still trying to solve.


Theature0.05, Building: Environment2 (N13), Nathan Campus, Brisbane

Date: Monday, 10/09/2012                  

Time: 5:30-6:30 pm


Speaker Biography: David V. Thiel graduated from the University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia, with a Degree in physics and applied mathematics and then completed the Masters and Ph.D. degrees at James Cook University, Townsville. He is currently the Director of the Centre for Wireless Monitoring and Applications at Griffith University, Nathan, Australia. He co-authored a book on switched parasitic antennas for cellular communications and is interested in mathematical optimisation techniques for antenna design. He has published over 95 journal papers, more than 140 papers presented at international conferences and has co-authored more than 9 patent applications. Recently, he was a co-inventor of the new RoHS and WEEE compliant electronics manufacturing technology called “circuits in plastic.” His research interests include electromagnetic geophysics, sensor development, electronics systems design and manufacture, and antenna development for wireless sensor networks. Dr. Thiel is a fellow of the Institution of Engineers, Australia. He is currently the Chair of the IEEE Wave Propagation Standards Committee and serves on the IEEE Antenna Standards Committee.


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